As we are in the middle of the plebiscite, I’m sure the dedicated No voters have already vigorously mailed in their ballots. The same can be said of us Yes voters who are equally dedicated to the Yes side. However, I think there’s still plenty of you out there who may still be thoughtfully percolating over the issues. Here’s some more readings related to the referendum and issues surrounding transportation in Vancouver.
- Referendum Questions: Are another million people really coming? [BC Local News] – Jeff Nagel is one of my favourite columnists in the region. Mainly because he writes about issues I want to read. The question is whether there are really 1 million people moving into Metro Vancouver. Well, the simple answer is yes and then some. The mayors have been quoting about 1 million people over the next 30 years. However, that only looks at the population of Metro Vancouver. How about the Fraser Valley? Metro is not an island unto itself. Many people living in Abbotsford, Mission, and Chilliwack commute into Metro for jobs. So that 1 million is going to happen sooner than later. Also check out the snazzy graphs.
But if you’re voting no because you think your transit agency is fundamentally wasteful, that’s just not true. – Jarrett Walker
Vancouver: Yes, you have a cost-effective transit agency! [Human Transit] – Jarrett Walker is one of my favourite transportation blogs to read. Why? He explains transit in very easy-to-understand terms. He also doesn’t promote one technology over the other. He essentially says let the situation guide what technology to be used for transit. He never puts the cart before the horse.
He points back to Todd Litman’s numbers and reports, which I mentioned in a previous post. TransLink is good at its core mission – transit. It is one of the most effective transit agencies in North America. The No side will compare to other transit agencies like the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC). The TTC does have great numbers, but the TTC only serves Toronto proper. Trans-Link serves many areas outside an urban core. In fact, much of the land in the east and south of TransLink’s service area are rural.
- Pete McMartin: Believe it or not, TransLink does things right [Vancouver Sun] – Pete McMartin lists his reasons for why TransLink is doing well. I know how people love to highlight the delays that SkyTrain faces. However, there hasn’t been any major delay this year thus far. Also, SkyTrain often stops outside of the stations because the trains are run so close together that the trains have to stop for a minute while the train ahead clears. It only takes half a minute before I hear grumbling or see disapproving faces on the train. There were 25 1-hour plus delays and 57 30-60 minute delays over the past five years. In that same time frame, there were 1.2 million schedule trips. I think airlines would kill for stats like that.
Vancouver’s broadway corridor: mind the gap! [Human Transit] – Here’s another post from Jarrett, but this one is from 2010. However, the question it poses are still relevant. You might be questioning the “$3 million hole-in-the-ground” along Broadway, but I think that “hole-in-the-ground” fills an important gap in the system. Jarrett doesn’t endorse the subway option. That’s my preference. I think a single ride from Coquitlam to the Canada Line makes perfect sense. Why does somebody on the Millennium Line have to get off at Commercial-Broadway, switch to the 99 B-Line, and then get onto the Canada Line to go to Richmond?
The Broadway extension to me is a regional project, not just a City of Vancouver project. It will help to get riders on the soon-to-be-completed Evergreen Line to Richmond Centre with one transfer. It’s a regional line with huge regional implications. Not to mention that the Central Broadway area is the second largest employer in the region. There’s a lot of reason to mind the gap and fill it.